A Loving Family (Part One)
- a serial dadvid + Mafia Family Au-
The name stemmed from the Vagabond.
It was almost laughable really, to compare the two.
The Vagabond demanded respect, whether he was regular Ryan, or the masked murderer that Los Santos had simultaneously feared and adored.
Though those words seem contradictory, the Fakes brought as much peace as they did chaos. With every gang they tore down the safer the dark alleys and mostly abandoned neighborhoods got, but every battle leading up to the final showdown was nothing but mayhem.
The casualties would grow to triple digits and heists performed by the Fake AH Crew would fill the city with rage.
But by the time Geoff and his kids cut off the head of the beast, the city would rejoice as their own children wouldn’t need to fear walking home from school.
And then there was David, submissive in every sense, loved by most but disrespected by all. Well, all who didn’t know about his reputation he held amongst the biggest crime bosses in America.
David always allowed Max and the other campers to walk all over him. Even at work he was looked down upon, trodden on by his coworkers and given side jobs he wasn’t payed for.
They saw him as a lackey, a nobody. A naive kid with his head so far in the clouds that anyone could get the drop on him.
But Max always knew the switch, when the light clicked and cobwebbed cogs began to turn. Max knew better than to test him, because he was no longer David much like The Vagabond wasn’t Ryan. That’s when David became somebody.
“Both strong and weak,” Max thought as he watched the two talk. Argue really, by the way David’s hands were flailing. But it was hard to make out through the tinted wind shield.
Ryan glanced at him and offered Max the closest thing to a smile when Max stepped into the car, which did nothing but unsettle Max since Uncle Ryan never bothered with formalities.
The Vagabond dabbled in them from time to time depending on the subject he was presented.
Max narrowed his eyes and stared hard at the blond haired man.
They were close, closer than Ryan was with anybody else, but Max knew that he couldn’t trust The Vagabond.
Ryan, yes. Ryan knew all of Max’s secretes, of the past David had only known about until the Fake’s showed up.
David glanced at Max through the rear view mirror, pride racing through him as he witnessed Max immediately tense in the King’s presence.
Max was intelligent of course, but David was glad to see Max demonstrating his sense of ‘street smarts’ by showing caution when dealing with the alternate ego that wore Ryan’s face.
Max met David’s glance,“What’s going on?”
David pulled out of the school’s parking lot, his knuckles white from the grip on the steering wheel.
Ryan glanced at him, noting the tense posture.
David noted Ryan noting him.
Ryan noted David noting him noting David.
Max hated this game.
“What’s the fuck is going on?” Max repeated, voice more forceful.
The two both snapped out of their match.
“Wanna grab lunch at the diner?” David seemingly snapped back to his usual cheerful self but Max knew something was still wrong.
“That’s fine.” Max straightened up and checked his phone absentmindedly, knowing he wasn’t going to get a straight answer until they arrived at the local diner.
Ryan sighed, and proceeded to look out the window. He didn’t bother to check his phone, he knew he had over a hundred texts from the crew. Almost all the texts begging him to stop.
“Oh fuck.” Max replied, eyes wide as he stared down at the table. He dipped his French fry in the small plastic cup filled with ketchup.
Ryan tried to asses Max’s reaction, but determined it useless. Max was a closed book when he wanted to be, even to Ryan, and only David could lift the cover and turn the page in these situations.
“You don’t have to, I don’t even want you too. It won’t help in the end run.” The last sentence was said more to Ryan with a hateful spit, who in turn scoffed.
“It’s his father, David. We take him too the scene and we take down the crew it’s that simple!”
“No it’s not!” David yelled, not caring about the attention he was drawing.
Max looked away, eyes staring at the orange and black decoration that covered the walls of the diner. He usually liked this time of year.
“Stray bullet? He dies. Deal goes wrong? He dies? You don’t think this through, like you’re doing now, he fucking dies!” David emphasized his words by pounding his fist on the table.
They were the only ones in the diner, the waitress and cook were too caught up in there conversation to notice the rowdy customers in the corner.
Mad Prince, the Sleepy Peak Slasher. Max’s shoulders tensed, but he kept his eyes averted.
The staff had carved out pumpkins and set them in the windows of the diner, Max thought it had its own sense of tacky charm in a good way.
“David, its the best bet. We do this and it’s nothing but peace in Los Santos. And Max’s mom can come back.” He let the words linger in the air.
“But maybe that’s what you’re afraid of.” Ryan’s voice was monotoned, and Max wished he had spoke the words with some sort of inflection.
A dark look overcame David’s face, a signal that this conversation had gone far enough.
“I’m calling Geoff.” Max piped up, tearing his eyes away from the diner interior to glance between the two that were caught up in a staring match.
Neither said a word, Max pushed away from
the table and stepped outside the diner. The bell that chimed above the door was the only sign that he had exited.
Max pulled out his phone, quickly responding to a text from Nikki and Neil who were excited for the upcoming camping trip before the fall season set in.
He didn’t notice the car pulling up.
He typed in Geoff’s number, listening to the ring as he focused his attention to crushing the bright orange leaf that skittered to a stop in front of him.
He couldn’t feel the eyes staring at him, the eyes waiting for confirmation.
“Did you say yes?” Geoff shouted so loud that Max had to pull the phone away from his ear.
“I missed you too.” Max sighed at the crude greeting, and turned to face the window of the diner looking past the carved pumpkins to where he could see David resisting the urge to choke Ryan.
“They’re fucking arguing right now like babies so I haven’t said anything yet. Can you come by? We are at the diner and I really wanna go home. They’re just being assholes.”
How could he have heard the approaching footsteps?
“Yeah, we’ll head that way. But get ready to have an ear full from Gavin. Someone brought another million dollar question.” He added false enthusiasm to the last sentence and Max could practically see him rolling his eyes.
Max groaned loudly, and Geoff laughed at his reaction. Max began to say his good bye when a gloved hand tapped his shoulder.
“Hold on- yeah?” There was no hesitation or pause. It happened all so fast.
The ski masked man grabbed him while the other man snatched his phone letting it clatter onto the side walk.
Max screamed and protested, kicking and fighting to gain his freedom. But they were already forcing him through the car door by the time Max got out of the initial shock.
They were arguing in the diner, and Geoff was too far away.
Max could faintly make out Geoff’s voice from his phone, he was probably screaming his head off after hearing the emotion.
Max fought to get out of the car, even getting as far as hanging out the door and screaming for help.
Max was forced into the middle of the seat, where they frantically pulled at his limbs to wrap the rope around his small wrists.
The door shut and they drove away.
David and Ryan didn’t even notice until Geoff bursted through the door of the diner, the rest of the FAHC tow.
They had to knock Max out after he resorted to biting, and his head ached as his eyes slowly opened. The room was dark except for a small blinking red light that was eye level in front of him. It stood a few feet away and took no time at all to determine it was a threat.
He shifted in his chair and the slightest movement made his head swim.
He could feel a heavy, tight weight around his chest. He knew it had to be ropes.
He and David would train consistently, how to make a weapon out of common items found in an interrogation room, how to escape from zip ties, and how to hide in a crowded room.
But Max’s mind was void of any information involving ropes, and it was almost laughable.
How could they have not covered that?
Max groaned as he tugged at the ropes, he wiggled but they didn’t budge.
He screamed. He rocked the chair. He kicked at the chair legs and then the air, hoping to connect with something that could help him get a feel of his surrounding.
The small red light blinked at him, and he returned the gesture. He was stuck and panicking in a completely dark room.
“David! Uncle Ryan! Uncle Geoff!” No response.
“Jack! Aunt Jack!” Where was he, where was he, where the hell was he.
“Fuck! Michael! Gavin! Jeremy!” He could feel the prickling of tears, his chest was beating so fast. His eyes were so heavy and tired but he forced them to stay open.
There was an odd crackling that filled the air, as if static breaking through a radio. Max stayed stock still waiting, the tears that ran down his face and the fast rise and fall of his chest were the only movement that could be found in the room
“Max? Scout? It’s Dad!”
“David? Where am I?” Max yelled, David voice was coming from next to the red light.
“Max, I want you to calm down,” It was suddenly Jack now, “Take a few deep breaths, baby.”
Max did as she said since no one ever disobeyed Jack.
“Where am I? Where are you guys?“ He said again once his heart had resumed a relatively calm pace.
“We don’t know yet, but we’re working on it, kid. We are at home, trying to get you back. Are you hurt?” Jeremy’s voice rang through.
“My head hurts a fuck ton, and I’m tired but I’m fine. The room’s completely dark.”
“You’re in a room, for sure?” Gavin piped up.
“Yes, I’m fucking sure Gavin! The room’s small, no echo.”
Michael was next to talk after a bout of silence.
“Max, you can’t see anything?”
“A red light, but it’s small and flashing. The rooms completely dark.”
“You said a small red light? Like one on a camcorder?” Ryan asked.
Max could hear whispering on the other end of the device, static crackling too loud for him to hear the exact details.
“I’m coming, Max. We are going to track the location and we are going to come and find you. I promise.” David’s voice sounded hoarse as though he’d been crying.
“Okay.” Because what else could he say?
His head pounded and his eyes grew heavier.
He heard more murmuring, on the other end and Max let the dull staticy voices lull him to sleep.